Laissez les bon temps roullez!
Or as most of the non-French world says, let the good times roll! Yesterday was President’s Day, a holiday for much of the workforce. But freelance writers and musicians– especially those who happen to be both– are not frequent paddlers in the mainstream. The real holiday to me is today, Fat Tuesday.
Though few outside of New Orleans probably took the day off, today is the culmination of Mardi Gras and the last hurrah before Ash Wednesday, when we’re supposed to attone for all that debauchery until Easter. For me it’s been a performing night for almost 10 years with bands such as Grand Chien, John the Conqueroo and the Cajun Strangers, at venues ranging from a German restaurant (go figure) to Milwaukee’s Pottowatomi Casino. Tonight I’m sitting in with the all-female Prairie Bayou Cajun band (no, not in drag) at the very appropriate Bourbon Street Grille in suburban Madison. I’ll play some guitar, t’fer (triangle), frottoir (rubboard), sing a bit of broken French, and with any luck, suck some crawfish tails and slurp some gumbo. And for an evening, a group of Cheesehead revelers will be conveyed from the Snowbelt to the French Quarter. Hey Toi!